EasyJet's attack: When cybercriminals take it to heart

The IT industry today is unstable.

Cyber criminals have only expanded their activities in recent months. The current situation, it must be admitted, is beneficial for the development of cyber-malveillance. The health crisis has plunged the world into such a complicated situation that the consequence in the field of cybersecurity is clear and clear. The recent hacks prove it.

This article will also interest you: EasyJet targeted by cyberattack, sees 9 million of its customers affected

All sectors are targeted, and all businesses are susceptible to attack at any time. The incident recently underwent not EasyJet clearly demonstrates this. And the Covid-19 is the amplifier of this vulnerability. "EasyJet was the victim of a very sophisticated cyber attack, as the British airline explained in a statement last Tuesday, without specifying when the cyberattack took place… While the airline is already weakened like many others by the economic consequences of the current Covid-19 pandemic, high-flying hackers have gained access to the personal data of 9 million EasyJet customers, including 320 of our compatriots. explains Franck DeCloquement, practitioner and expert in economic and strategic intelligence, who is also a member of the CEPS (Centre for Strategic Studies and Prospective), of CyberTaskForce.

The attack on the British giant resulted in the theft of millions of apartment data at the loan of 9 million customers, including financial information such as bank numbers and identifiers. While the company was quick to notify the relevant authorities in this case the National Cyber Security Centre (in short NCSC), and the UK's data protection authority the ICO, the problem remains. 

This kind of opportunistic cyberattack has its source in the weakening of companies because of the coronavirus. "In a global pandemic, the current international environment is particularly troubled and subject to many forms of exacerbated conflict and pernicious destabilization. Both cyber, politically and socially. The world of air is thus, to say the least, entering a zone of turbulence, as the EasyJet case clearly demonstrates… ». Explains Franck DeCloquement. And the situation did not escape the head of the British airline, because, to this end, EasyJet's chief executive, Johan Lundgren, said: "Since we became aware of the incident, we have understood that because of the Covid-19 there are strong fears about the use of personal data for online scams." On the one hand, the weakening of computer systems due to several reasons will be remembered, such as the general containment that led to the adoption of an uncontrolled telework system, and the danger that the data collected in this incident will be misused, causing irreversible damage to customers who are victims of piracy. It is for this reason that the airline's boss has recommended since the discovery of the incident to his customers "to be very vigilant, especially if they receive unsolicited requests"."

Caution is therefore required. Businesses need to be more vigilant, but also to prepare for the after-coronavirus. According to many experts, the attacks that did not take place during this profitable period, will not fail to be carried out after the disease. Indeed, some vulnerabilities will certainly be discovered. but malicious cybers may, for example, decide not to take advantage of it at the moment, waiting for companies to lower their guard a little. It is for this reason that it is strongly recommended that companies not only fight cybercrime in a fierce way, but not forget to prepare for the next battle after the pandemic.

Franck DeCloquement highlights the fact that we must not only fear the consequences of conventional cyberattacks. That we need to pay more attention to side effects that are generally not seen at first, and this is often where the reasons for these incidents really lie: "Beyond their impact on IT systems, these operations are likely to have serious consequences for businesses: reputational damage, weakening of COMPUTER systems, loss of trust of customers and financial partners. , and a consequent drop in sales… While some sectors have traditionally been targeted by cyber-attacks, massive destabilization and deleterious influence, such as the health, defence or energy sectors, any public or private organization is exposed to computer risk. ».

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